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Parliamentary cooperation, trade, economic relations and Bulgaria’s accession to Schengen discussed at a meeting between the President of the National Assembly Mrs Tsetska Tsacheva and the Speaker of the Czech Chamber of Deputies Mrs Miroslava Nemtcova

Parliamentary cooperation, enhancement of the trade and economic relations and the accession of Bulgaria to the Schengen area were the key topics discussed at the meeting between the President of the National Assembly, Mrs Tsetska Tsacheva and the Speaker of the Czech Chamber of Deputies Mrs Miroslava Nemtcova.

A parliamentary delegation from the Chech Republic is on a 3-day official visit to Bulgaria from 17 to 19 October 2012. The visit is held at the invitation of Mrs. Tsetska Tsacheva.

At the meeting the Chair of the Bulgarian parliament noticed that the relations between Bulgaria and the Czech Republic are excellent and underscored that they have a solid foundation in the rich historic relations and common culture of the two Slavic people. The visit represents further step in the development of the bilateral dialogue and the parliamentary cooperation, carried out mostly by the friendship groups in the two parliaments, has noted Tsetska Tsacheva.

Bulgaria supports and is ready to take active part in the marking of the 1150th anniversary of the missionary work of the holy brothers Cyril and Methodius in Great Moravia, emphasized Tsetska Tsacheva, adding that the participation of Bulgaria would be another sign of respect owed to our forefathers. She recalled the visit, paid by a delegation led by her, at the eve of May 24th, back in 2010, in the town of Mikulcice, where the older brother is supposed to have lived towards the end of his life.

“The well-being of Bulgarian and Czech citizens depends on the trade and economic relations between the two friendly countries - we need to think not only about the historic memory but about the future as well”, stressed Tsetska Tsacheva. She pointed to the existing untapped potential in the trade and economic relations, particularly in the fields of infrastructure, machine-building, energy and tourism. “With its natural gifts Bulgaria is an attractive destination not only for sea, but for spa and cultural tourism as well”, underscored the Speaker of the Bulgarian parliament. She added that after the transition years, there was again a rise in the number of Czech tourists in Bulgaria.

The chair of the Bulgarian parliament stressed that the acceptance of Bulgaria to the Shengen area is a main priority that has the consensus of all political forces in the Bulgarian parliament. The assessments for the technical readiness of Bulgaria and Romania are excellent, the report is objective and evaluates what has been achieved and we hope now, at the forthcoming in October 2012 meeting of the EU Council on Justice and Home Affairs,  for a favorable political decision that will allow the accession of Bulgaria and Romania to the Schengen’s space, Tsetska Tsacheva added.

During the talks, the President of the National Assembly expressed gratitude for the support extended to Bulgaria in its bid for full membership in the European Union, as well as during the first years of the membership. Tsetska Tsacheva further said Bulgaria had signed the Treaty on Stability, Coordination and Governance in the Economic and Monetary Union but under certain conditions.

The Head of the Czech Chamber of Deputies, Miroslava Nemtcova, noted that the visit has a deeper meaning - tracing back the presence of Czech people in the history of Bulgaria. She gave high marks to the bilateral relations. The development and preservation of the warm and close relations between the two friendly peoples should continue. According to her a good and strong base for deepening of the relations was the fact that many students are thought Bulgarian in prestigious Czech universities and many Bulgarians study the Czech language.

There are strong trade and business relations between the Czech Republic and Bulgaria, said Miroslava Nemtcova, giving as example the big investor CEZ and expressed satisfaction with the growing number of Czech tourists to Bulgaria.

Later on Tsetska Tsacheva and Miroslava Nemtcova met with journalists. Miroslava Nemtcova reiterated the strong support of her country for the Schengen accession of Bulgaria.

The Czech parliamentarians had meetings with representatives of different Bulgarian institutions. With the Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev, Miroslava Nemtcova discussed the current financial and economic crisis in the eurozone and they agreed that even though the two countries are not part of it there have been serious and direct implications for their economies. Miroslava Nemtcova declared that the two countries needed to have realistic and pragmatic approach towards these processes.

Key event in the programme of the Czech parliamentarians was the inauguration of the memorial plaque of the Czech architect Antonin Kolar. He was the first Chief Architect of Sofia city. He had designed the monument of Vasil Levski, the main building of the Military Academy, the Military Club, the old building of hotel “Bulgaria”, the building of the Defense Ministry, all in the capital. He took part in the reconstruction of the Palace and other emblematic sites of the old part of Sofia.

On October 19th 2012, the Chair of the Czech Chamber of Deputies Miroslava Nemtcova and the delegation led by her will attend the opening of the Conference of Bulgarian researchers of Bohemia in the town of Blagoevgrad.

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